UK Property Law
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Thanks for you question.
You should formally write to the the landlord specifying the disrepair, making a list of the reasonable repair required and ask that he make those repairs within a reasonable time (eg. 14 days). State that if the landlord does not make the repair within that time you will pay to have the repairs made and will seek to claim the expense from him and are prepared to make an application to court if necessary.If the landlord does not make the repair you can pay to have it done and then write formally to him requesting the payment of the cost, again within a reasonable time). If he does not pay you can issue a claim for the money yourself through Her Majesty Courts Service's online service: http://www.moneyclaim.gov.uk/
It's pretty cheap and straightforward to use.
If the state of repair (particularly damp) is very bad then you should contact the local authority environmental health department and ask them to send an officer round. If the state of the property is bad he will issue an enforcement notice against the Landlord to carry out works and this may prompt him in to making the repair. If he finds it unfit for human habitation then he will declare it as such and you will be able to terminate your agreement with the landlord on the basis of this breach.
You have rights in respect of the damp as this is a genuine repair issue. If the issue is simple decoration in to a different more pleasant colour (for example) then you probably do not have the right to compel the landlord to paint as this is an aesthetic preference rather than disrepair per se.If this has been useful please kindly click accept so that I may be rewarded for my efforts. It will be gratefully received and you will be free to ask follow up questions.Kind regards,Tom